Thursday, August 9, 2012

Sore Arms Wednesday

I couldn't get out of bed Wednesday morning.  I was so tired.  Went to work, and made it through.

When I got home we only had the youngest boy with us.  The oldest two where at the lake tubing for their young men/young women activity.  The younger daughter was at my in-law's for piano lessons.  We decided to go grocery shopping because we are so exciting.  We also got some dinner.

My wife had been to a meeting at the youngest's new school.  We're both excited for him to start. He will be going 5 1/2 hours a day to an autism school.  The meeting was just about policy and procedures.  They have an open house for his school tomorrow.

Had a good night at the gym last night. It was arms day.  Pretty typical workout, three different sets of exercises focusing on bicep, triceps and delts.  The one change was a new triceps exercise using the pull-up bars.

We put them on the lowest setting, and then bent with our heads under the bar. You then simply do an arm extension. These seem really simple at first, but after about 10 your arms are tired.  I'm feeling it in my triceps today.

I also felt good because there was only one other person at the gym, and she was new.  She was fairly fit, but I was able to outwork her easily. I was an entire cycle in front of her at the end of the workout, including a run.

When I got home the oldest two still weren't there.  The finally turned up just after 10:00 p.m.  One of the boats had run out of gas, and they had to go and tow it back in.  They had a great time.  Pretty good day.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Sunday Recap

Yesterday was a busy day. We started with a Lutz Family Reunion. We haven't had one of these in decades. Got to see lots of cousins and aunts and uncles that we used to see a lot. Also got to see my little sister whom we haven't seen in years. We also got to meet her husband. Here is a photo.

The biggest downside was that my youngest, autistic son was overwhelmed. After four and a half hours at the reunion, we left for my in-laws for dinner. My youngest was freaking out because he was so tired. His older brother decided he would calm him down by taking him for a walk. My wife and I both told him not to. He went anyway.

After a time I started to worry and went for a car ride to find them. After a few minutes I received a call from my Mom's house. My youngest son had got close to the in-laws and freaked out because it wasn't where he wanted to be. He scratched his brother and took off. His brother saw that he was safe and followed him up to the other grandma's house where he could have Popsicles and watch Animaniacs. He fell asleep in a chair.

When I got to my Mom's house my little brother and his family where there from Nevada. My folks where at a meeting, so I stuck around to entertain and enjoy their company. I left my with at her folks' house for awhile.

When my folks got home they had a car full of used clothing. We helped them carry it in and then I went to get my wife and daughters. When they got back they had a clothing party. All if the woman folk went through the clothing and shoes. We were there for hours.

My youngest woke up briefly and came and laid in a nest of used clothing. My daughter and her cousin decided to try on a pair of pants.

It was finally time to go home. The youngest woke up at about 3:30 am but let us sleep while he watched tv.

Long day, but good.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Level 6

Okay, I realize I'm horrible at this blogging thing. It is either feast or famine. But I had a pretty good day on Friday and wanted to write about it.

 First off, we are having a biggest loser contest at the gym, and so far I'm ahead. In the past seven weeks I've dropped 26 pounds (most of it occurring in five weeks time.) That's great. It puts me down 74 pounds overall.

 Second, we had level testing at Fire House Fitness. Our trainer, Jason Muir, has six levels of fitness he would like to get everyone through. Just because you hit these levels doesn't mean you are done, but he gives you a special deal when you pass the last level and show you are committed to working out. I took my level six test on Friday.

 All levels start with a static squat. For level one it is 60 seconds. It goes up in 30 second intervals for each level until level five, then you jump up to a four minute squat. Level six it jumps another minute to five minutes. Sometime during the past few weeks I had kind of pulled one of my gluteus minor muscles and it has put a bit of a strain on my lower back. I haven't been able to do a five minute squat since then. I really just had to go to my happy place and power through it, but mission accomplished.

I was the only person going for level six at 5:30 a.m. so everyone else had started their run by the time I was done. For the lower levels you run around the block, which is around .5 miles. You then move up to a run down the street that is about .8 miles. Then one to two of those runs for level five. Finally you do a combination of the other two and run 1.5-1.75 (I'm not sure of the exact length, I just know it is over 1.5 miles.) Running has never been my strong point, but in the past two weeks it has gotten much easier. I'm not sure if it the extra 10 pounds coming off, or what. I ran about 1.25 miles without taking a break, and finished up with only one 30 second walk. My runs in earlier tests (the .8 mile run) usually took me just over eight minutes. This one that was twice the length took me 14:23 seconds. I was quite proud of that.

 We then moved into the thing I dreaded the most, the "3 minute drill". This is one of those things that doesn't seem like a big deal until you try it, and are told you have two chances to get through it without stopping or you fail. This entire drill is done in the push up position with your hands on a medicine ball. You start out with 30 seconds of mountain climbers, then 30 seconds of V hops (jumping both feet up to one side of the ball, back to the starting point, then up to the other side of the ball.) You then do 30 seconds of straight hops, just jumping both feet forward and apart, to both feet back at the starting position and together. By this time my "hops" felt like they were only moving about four-five inches at a time, very small. You then go back to 30 seconds of mountain climbers, and finish with a one minute plank, 30 seconds with your left leg in the air, and 30 seconds with your right foot in the air. The plank almost finished me because I was so unstable I almost fell over (which would have meant starting over.)

 I finished that and was told not to stop, but to run over to the TRX system for the final test. For those unfamiliar with the TRX, it looks like truck tie downs, but hangs from a bolt in the wall, and has two handles. For the final test we do a TRX 3 ab combo. This was the first exercise I ever did at FHF, and it almost convinced me not to come back! You shorten the handles so they hang between six and ten inches off the ground, and put your feet into the handles. You get in push up position, and start off with 15 pikes (basically raising your butt straight up into the air), then without stopping you switch to 15 pendulums (keeping your upper body straight and moving your legs side to side using your obliques.) Then without stopping you move into 15 peddles (you bring your knees up to your chest one at a time, this is almost like a small one legged pike with a bent knee.) Then you move into the collapsing on the floor in exhaustion exercise, which technically isn't an exercise, but nice none the less.

 At this time I realized that everyone I had thought had left the gym had really been hanging around in the front area out of site, and come back in to cheer me on after the trainers started yelling at me not to wuss out. I got a big hug from the trainers, well the ones who aren't averse to immense amounts of sweat, and will eventually get to sign the wall as a graduate. I'm pretty proud of this accomplishment, but have to keep going. I've got about another 45 pounds to lose to get back to what I weighed when I got married 16 years ago. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Okay, so I said earlier that I was needing a health related goal to help continue loosing weight. Last year, it was running a 5k and getting up on a wake board. I had never had the arm strength to drag my fat butt out of the water, but last year I did all of these things. Then I promptly stopped loosing weight. This year I've decided that I'm going to participate in the Bountiful Triathlon .

This tri is a "Sprint", which means that it is possible for normal people to do. I say that, as I have a few friends and coworkers who compete. One of my management team is currently training for his first Iron Man, and he is nervous.

I've spoken with a few people who have done this, and they said it is a nice start, although they have mixed feelings about Bountiful's. The deal is that this triathlon runs in reverse. You do the running first, then biking, and then the swim. Usually this is the other way around. I will be competing as a Clydesdale, which means a really big guy (+200 pounds). The one guy that I spoke to who has only run two sprint triathlons told me that he really preferred the Bountiful format.

So, last week I started my preparation, and I have until August to be completely ready. I'm starting by getting to the point I can run for a half hour straight. When I say run, I mean shamble along while moving my arms in a running motion. I haven't done much running over the winter because it was cold, and I was in the gym (which is kind of cross-fitish.) Now, we are running more as a gym, and I've started running three days a week using the Couch to 5k program from This week, I alternate between running for 90 seconds and walking for 90 seconds. By the end of the program, which is eight weeks, you are just running for 30 minutes straight.

On the other days of the week, I'm going to the gym, and I just got my bike out and in working condition. I plan on just using my mountain bike for this race, and seeing as I used it for transportation for more than a year of my life, I think this will be fine. I might end up buying some narrower tires for it, but I don't have really beefy off-road tires anyway.

In the summer I'll work on swimming at my parents' house, and the local pool. I've already told my brother, who swam in high school (and did really well), and his son who has swam in high school that I'll need pointers. I've also spoken with my step-dad about it as well. He taught swimming for a long time, that's why they have the pool.

I really think I could complete this tri right now, but it would take me a long time. So you start with a 5k run, then move onto a 10 mile bike ride, and finish with a 350 meter swim, in the indoor pool.

Now I've got to get serious about my diet. I know that I changed my diet when we went on vacation last year, and haven't really gotten serious about it since. I haven't been horrible, but I haven't stayed focused on eating right either.

I'll be giving updates on the training as I go along, so wish me luck.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Soccer Saturday

Saturday was supposed to be really stormy, and by the end of the day it was. It started nicely, however.

I started the day running our Bountiful Baskets site. It is a food co-op that is growing like crazy. We discussed our upcoming changes, and we'll be moving earlier in the day next month.

I furtilized the lawn and did some housework. Then the weather turned bad.

This also coincided with the start of my oldest soccer game. As I said before, we've changed from a 4-4-2 to a 3-4-3. Out last game was fun to watch, even though we lost. This game started out great, with my oldest anchoring the right side of our defense. The other team could barely get the ball across our half line. When they did our defense shut them down.

Our midfield has got it suddenly, like a light switch was turned on. Two of our players, D and M, are working almost flawlessly together in our central midfield. They are winning balls and making beautiful passes.

Our wing players are a great mix. Our left wing is a super skills player, M. He is kind of slow but has such amazing ball control and vision. He kept playing balls that would make me cringe because he didn't play the obvious pass. But he made perfect through passes that beat four defenders and let a striker off by himself one-on-one with the keeper. Our right wing is a bundle of energy and is everywhere on the field. He, CS, is very skilled as well but makes really good runs.

Our defense has been working well together, but they really balanced out yesterday. They were attacking and covering for each other. They were making nice passes to the wing, not right up the middle like we did last season.

Our forwards have come a long way too. We have one with so much raw talent, C, he had at least five shots in the first 15 minutes. The other two have gained confidence and are starting to make the right runs.

We could tell that it was only a matter of time before we scored. And finally C ended up one-on-one with the keeper. He drew him out and picked his spot.

My oldest ended up being subbed in and left forward, which is unusual. He took the opportunity and made a run in, trapped the ball and put us up 2-0.

The other team only had one real chance to score. They had a break away, but their forward played the ball too far forward. Our goalie ha it covered, but grabbed the other player earning a penalty kick. Our keeper, J, can get down on himself when he gets scored on. He lined up, and the forward took the shot. Our goalie moved the right way, but it looked like he would be nutmegged, when the ball goes between your legs. He sat down hard and trapped the ball by sitting on it. It was crazy. That is how the first half ended.

Having been on the other side of a game like this we knew it would be hard for the other team to get out of their half. One coach went shofar as to predict we would get two more goals and a shutout.

The second half started much like the first, with us controlling the game. C added another goal in a one-v-one situation. The D, our central midfielder chipped the keeper from 25-30 yard out. One of our other forwards, JF, charged the goal and put a rebound away (this was a controversial offside decision, even out coaches thought he was off. Our linesman was new, and we aren't sure he understood the offside rule. He actually tried to call M offside while he was dribbling the ball forward.) My oldest was put back in at leery forward and put another shot away.

The game ended 6-0. The boys were so excited. The wife is sending me a photo and video of my oldest first and second goals and I'll post them as soon as I get them.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Week in review

This last week was crazy. I've been staying in the office lately, but had a full week out and about. It meant I really didn't have time to sit down and record any thoughts.

Spent the first few days at Salt Lake Community College for their benefits fair. Then off to the state capital to meet with all of the state agency HR directors.

Yesterday, April 12th, we had wonderful weather that included snow, again. Mainly rain.

Of course, this was the oldest first soccer game. We ran a little behind, but made it during the first half.

We've changed up our playing system this spring. We were playing a 4-4-2 (four defenders, four midfielders, and two forwards), and now we're playing a 3-4-3. My oldest has been a standout defender, but he's trying to cheat a little too much. The head coach moved my son up to midfield for the second half, and he was a scrapper. It was fun to watch him push people off the ball (in a legal way), and just to see him run. This is a big change from last fall. Joining the wrestling team, and their tough conditioning has really made a big difference. Our kids played such pretty soccer. I know it sounds weird, but it was impressive.

They have finally learned what we've been teaching them about possession. We haven't had the speed to play the ball up and over, no boom ball for us. And as coaches we've tried to keep them from doing that anyway. We had lots of shots on goal, but their goalie was good, tall, and had a mustache (he's only 12). The other team scored because our goalies couldn't stop the rebounds. They did make the initial saves though. We lost four to one, but our team seemed very upbeat.

Now you'll start seeing more soccer from me. Have a great weekend!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Egg hunt #1

We had my side of the families annual Easter egg hunt yesterday. We had 24 children running around.

Our youngest, who is autistic has never really taken part. He would find one piece of candy and stop to eat it. Yesterday, with some prodding, we got him to pick up eggs and put them in his basket. He tired of it before the end of the hunt, but did really well. The wife has all the photos, so once they are up I'll link them.

We spent the morning "rodent shopping" as the wife called it.

The children were all excited when they saw that the bunny had brought them bikes, or in the case of the oldest a skateboard. I road around the block with my daughters. Excellent morning.